STATE TIMES NEWS
JAMMU: Justice Sanjay Dhar of J&K High Court, while deciding two different petitions filed by Dinesh Gupta, Ex-Chairman Citizen Cooperative Bank and Kuldeep Gupta, then Manger Citizen Coopertaive Bank in a loan scam, quashed FIR against Dinesh Gupta Chairman Citizen Cooperative Bank. Justice Sanjay Dhar also dismissed petition filed by Kuldeep Gupta seeking quashment of FIR.
While disposing of both petitions, Justice Sanjay Dhar after hearing Adv Abhinav Sharma for petitioners whereas AAG Aseem Sawhney appearing of J&K UT, observed that it is necessary to take note of the fact that the impugned FIR has been registered way back in 2009 and for last 11 years, the investigation of the case has not been completed.
“On going through the case diary, I got a feeling that the investigation agency has been sleeping over the matter without making any substantial progress with regard to investigation of the case. For last so many years, the investigating agency is simply writing letters to revenue authorities for obtaining valuation report of land that was offered as collateral security for securing loan. One after another investigating officer has remained satisfied by simply writing letters to the revenue authorities without making any effort to pursue those communications with relevant authorities,” observed Justice Sanjay Dhar.
He further said that investigating Agency is vested with sufficient powers under Criminal Procedure Code to proceed against anybody who does not cooperate or does not furnish relevant information to investigating officer. In the instant case, it seems that the agency has not taken trouble to have resort to these measures. It appears that even supervisory officers have ignored lackadaisical approach of the investigating officers in this case. One can understand the delay in investigation of a case, which involves unearthing of conspiracies of larger magnitude spread over different parts of country or globe, which, of course, is a time-consuming process, but in a case of instant nature, which does not involve any such conspiracy, keeping a case under investigation for 11 long years, is something which is unacceptable, particularly when investigation of the case has at no stage been stayed by this Court or any other Court. It is high time that supervisory officers of Police devote some attention towards ensuring expeditious investigation of cases within their respective jurisdictions by peeping into state of affairs prevailing in investigating wing of police.
With these observations, Justice Sanjay Dhar directed Inspector General of Police, Jammu to supervise investigation of instant case and ensure that the investigation is brought to its logical conclusion within a period of two months. He shall also take stock of all delayed investigations within his jurisdiction and thereafter initiate corrective measures.
As per police case, on December 1, 2009 at Police Station, Gandhi Nagar, Jammu received a written complaint from respondent No. 2 alleging therein that petitioners herein are in collusion and misusing public money by using their position and authority. As per complaint, in 2001, the petitioner-Kuldeep Kumar Gupta, while working as Branch Manager, Ware House Branch of the Citizen’s Cooperative Bank Ltd hatched a criminal conspiracy to rob bank by fraudulently raising loan of Rs 10 lakh in favour of one, Rajinder Kumar. It was averred in the complaint that as per norms of the Bank to raise loan of Rs 10 lakh, a security deposit of at least Rs 20 lakh is required, whereas, in the instant case, the borrower had produced collateral security in the shape of land measuring 14 Kanals 6 Marlas situated at village Gatta Gajansoo, which was valuing only about Rs 1.5 lakh. It was alleged that petitioner-Kuldeep Kumar Gupta hatched a deep-rooted conspiracy with Rajinder Kumar and got the valuation of property in question, done from an approved valuer of Citizens Cooperative Bank Ltd., M/s Khosla and Co., who exaggerated value of land to the tune of Rs 20,02,000. It was further alleged that petitioner Kuldeep Kumar Gupta himself exaggerated the value of the land in capacity of Branch Manager and recommended sanctioning of loan worth Rs 10 lakh in favour of Rajinder Kumar. The complaint further stated that after getting necessary sanction, M/s Rajinder Kumar and Co. withdrew money from loan account on the basis of fake performa bills and loan money was never used for the purpose, it had been sanctioned.
According to complaint, the fake
performa bills were arranged by the petitioner-Kuldeep Kumar Gupta. It was
further stated in the complaint that the account became a non-performing asset as the loan was not repaid and the then administrator of board of Citizen’s Cooperative Bank Ltd. directed proper verification of collateral security by competent authority, who vide his report dated November 5, 2005 stated valuation of the collateral security as Rs 1.45 Lakh only. It was further alleged in complaint that Chairman of the Citizen’s Cooperative Bank, petitioner-Dinesh Gupta is trying to hush-up the matter and settling the case by giving heavy rebate so as to erase sins of petitioner-Kuldeep Kumar Gupta for heavy consideration which can be ascertained by sustained interrogation. On basis of the complaint, the FIR which is subject matter of challenge of afore titled two petitions came to be registered at Police Station Gandhi Nagar and investigation of case was set into motion.